2nd day of Brightmoon
The phases of the moon are particularly important at the moment; according to our "guide", we will need to be able to reach our destination within a certain phase. I explained this, as well as our adventures over the past week or so, over in the journal of my group. Here I will just write of things that are more personal in nature.
First, a minor observation- minor because personal is not the same thing as important. When trying to find ways to hurry to our destination, Ayman's Haste spell was brought up. Just... no. I am sorry but I will never allow that spell to be cast on me. Gaining a few minutes of extra speed is not enough to balance out making me one year older. This does not seem to bother the rest of my traveling companions but it very much does to me. Why, I will not explain though they are likely to learn the reason at some point, but I cannot do anything that will make me age faster than I already am. I have a good reason for this, even if I am too reserved to explain it.
Now to move on to what is actually important. If there is one thing I dislike more than the aristocracy, it is evil priests. "Loathing" and "repulsion" do even begin to describe that hatred. As much as I would like to never have to face these abominable creatures again, I am also quite impatient to get this quest sorted out and the duke rescued... if the vile priests have not already taken control of his will and bent it to their own. We certainly need to rescue the duke, but we also need to be prepared for what shape he may be in. This is not just goblins and a stray evil bugbear cleric or two anymore. This is a huge temple of the Brotherhood of Dread, the priesthood that already wants to see us destroyed. How can I get my friends to understand what we may face there?
I am not just speaking of undead or monstrous minions, either, which are things we have defeated before. My companions see me throwing around mind control magic on a regular basis with little effort and I am limited in what I can do with it, being bound to a priesthood of Good and my own principles (yes, mischievous people do have those). These individuals will not have my morals; they will not refrain from using us as they wish should their magic take hold. When you are mind-controlled, you lose who you are, your ability to think and react properly... that sounds obvious, I know, but it is not a good feeling to be on the wrong side of that, particularly if the person wielding the magic is using it for nefarious purposes. Even getting hit with mild mind-control is not pleasant (been there- how do you think we Messengers learned?) but my kind is at least harmless. I need to get my friends to understand what they may face so they can be wary. They are not nearly wary enough.
I do not think they understand how much of a threat Tarus still holds. I know I am coming off as paranoid and peevish, but I am feeling paranoid and peevish. I do not understand why the others seem to trust him. After using magic for well over a decade I know my limits and the reach of what I am granted by my god, particularly when it comes to charm and beguilement as those were what I was taught first. Something as empty-headed as a goblin will remain beguiled for quite some time, but a human priest? I would not be surprised if the spell wore off before we even reached the temple and then what? Once an evil priest, always an evil priest; how can we know that the moment he breaks free from the spell I placed on him, he won't gleefully stab one of us in the back- or worse? This is a spellcaster who has tried to kill us on more than one occasion. I know the kind of magic he wields and how it can be twisted so I will continue to keep a watchful eye over him, being the only one who truly knows what to look for and how to cancel it. This is fine and good for now, but one Messenger cannot possibly shield his friends from ranks of those with this kind of magic. Not for the first time, I wish I had one of my brothers or sisters by my side as I approach evil.
Hermes, please guide our steps, let me keep my wits and my magic ready so I can protect those I travel with. I know my magic is not the most powerful, but let it serve us well. Please.